Security Challenges
Volume 13, No.2 (2017)

The Private Sector Does It Better? Neo-Liberalism, Contractors and the Australian Department of Defence

This article argues that the adoption of neo-liberalist ideology and the assumptions of this ideology were the driving force behind the increased use of contractors by Australia’s Department of Defence (DoD). The initiatives of federal governments since the Hawke Government will be examined, including the impact of these initiatives on the size of the DoD and recent Australian Defence Force (ADF) operations overseas. While contracting has enabled the DoD to fill gaps in its in-house capabilities, the efficiency and effectiveness that is assumed by neo-liberalists to come from utilising the private sector has not always been realised.

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